7 Inspiring Stories About Lottery Winners That Will Warm Your Heart!

There’s nothing like hearing about good things happening to good people - especially when when they're winning multi-million jackpot prizes! While many who play the lottery and win choose to spend their multi-million jackpots on lavish homes, luxury cars, family and friends, many winners use their millions to help those less fortunate, and for some, their newfound wealth came to them when they needed it most. Check out these seven heartwarming stories of lottery winners who spread their luck!

1. Elderly Canadian Couple Donate Entire $11.2 Million Lottery Prize

Allen and Violet Large made headlines in the best way possible when they won the Lotto 6/49 jackpot in July 2010. Both in their 70’s, the elderly couple decided that instead of dealing with all the hassle that comes with a multi-million jackpot prize, they would donate every cent to charity.

Allen and Violet Large

In an interview with CBC News, Violet explained, “What you’ve never had, you never miss”. The charitable couple had enough retirement savings and were living comfortably, so they really had no need for the prize money, “That money that we won was nothing. We have each other.” Allen large told reporters.

At the time of their big win, Violet was battling cancer, Alzheimer's and diabetes, and this led to them in deciding where the bulk of their winnings were to go. Hospitals in Truro and Halifax, Nova Scotia, were among the main beneficiaries of the Large’s generosity, along with their local fire department, churches and cemeteries, the Red Cross, the Salvation Army.
It made us feel good,” said Violet. “And there's so much good being done with that money.


2. Les Robin Helps Parents Bust Summer Boredom

Millions of children and parents around the world benefit from the structure and fun that summer day camps provide. However, there are still many families who simply cannot afford it. This is where Powerball winner Les Robins comes in!

In 1993, Robins, a school teacher, won a $110 million jackpot prize. He decided to use his millions to establish a summer camp after seeing that many of the children that he taught had no access to the same summer activities and entertainment facilities that he enjoyed in his youth.

Camp Winnegator, set on 226 acres Robins had purchased with his winnings, was in operation for over ten years, providing parents with an affordable summer camp where their children could make friends, take part in fun activities, enjoy the great outdoors, and create great memories that will last them a lifetime!

3. A Real Cinderella Story

This next in line for our heartwarming stories involves tragedy, hope and ultimately, success! Cynthia Stafford story starts in 2007 when her brother was unfortunately killed by a drunk driver. This left Cynthia, who was already financially struggling to support herself and her father, raising his five children

Difficult situations like these often leave people feeling hopeless, but not Cynthia! She always prayed that one day, she would win the lottery. On Mother's Day of 2007, she bought a $2 Mega Millions lottery ticket for the $112 million jackpot prize - and won it! Cynthia not only has the means to support her family, but her big win has also allowed her to establish her very own production company and invest in real estate.

The formerly struggling foster mom did not forget her roots and has made contributions towards organizations like UNICEF and Kids in the Spotlight, and The Geffen Playhouse.

Who needs a glass slipper and a prince when you have a winning lottery ticket?


4. New Jersey’s $429 Million Powerball Winner Is Tackling Poverty!

Most people who win the lottery tend to spend it on cars, houses, or give to their family and friends. The Smiths? Well, in addition to paying off mortgages, student loans, and setting aside some savings, they decided to give it back to their city.

The Smith family win $4290 million Powerball prize

Pearlie Smith and her seven children scooped a massive $429 million playing US Powerball in 2016. The family of eight set up the Smith Family Foundation to provide financial funding for various grassroots organisations that were created to improve the lives of people in their city of Trenton, New Jersey. The foundation provides funding for Christian values, educational opportunities for the students in the Trenton District, youth and family support, neighbourhood development, and more.

The drive to create the Smith Foundation comes from the family living in a poverty and drug-riddled area. Although they were able to overcome difficulties through hard work and education, many in the community, especially children, are in dire need of assistance.

The Smith family foundation

In an interview with NJ.com, Arthur Smith, grandson of matriarch Pearlie Smith, said, “We want to fund programs that directly affect systems of poverty so we can help change the systems or change the dynamics that are causing people to be in poverty.” Rather than just helping them find food or give away food, we can make it so they now have the ability to obtain employment, get their proper education in order to be able to go out and get their own food."

5. There’s Always a Reward for Kindness - In This Case, INR10 Million!

This man’s random act of kindness shows that good deeds never go unpaid - and in this case totally change his life! Mofijul Rahima Sheikh, 22, was the sole winner of the INR10 million (US$150,000) from Karunya - a Kerala state lottery.

Kerala lottery winner

Sheikh’s inspiring story started when he travelled from his hometown to Kerala to find work in order to support his family back in Bardhaman, West Bengal. After his first day working at a construction site, he decided to spend his entire first day’s pay of INR50 ($0.75), on a Karunya lottery ticket, which conveniently translates to “Compassion Lottery”. We say this because Mofijul Rahima Sheikh bought this ticket from a disabled ticket seller near the construction site. "He told me he purchased the ticket out of sympathy for the physically-challenged seller," local police official UK Shahjahan told the BBC.

After discovering he had won the INR10 million prize, around 625 years worth of wages, he spent two days at the police station to keep his winning ticket safe until the banks reopened after the Hindu holiday of Shivaratri.

Just several days after leaving Bardhaman, West Bengal, he was heading back with a full bank account! “We look forward to a better life and are eagerly waiting for him. Who does not have such dreams?” said Shafiq-ul, a relative. Sheikh, who was planning on working to support his family and eventually save enough to purchase a house for his wife and 8-month old child, will now be able to do both of these - minus the construction work!


6. Widow Wins CA$2 Million with Her Best Friend on the Anniversary of Her Husband's Death

Susan Hook and Martha McCallum had been friends for over 50 years when they won a CA$2 million BC/49 prize together in August 2019!

Susan Hook and Martha McCallum

This life-changing win came during a particularly difficult time, “I am not a drinker but I said ‘I need a glass of wine, and we cried together,” said Hook. “Yesterday was the anniversary of my husband’s passing and it is quite something to know that we became millionaires on that day. I dread that day every year.

While money might have turned some friends into foes, Susan and Martha seem to be closer than ever! The two told the British Columbia Lottery Corporation that they will continue on living together, as they had been since the deaths of their husbands, but plan on fulfilling their lifelong dreams of travelling the world together and using the money to make their lives "comfortable, but not flashy."

If this isn't friendship goals, we don't know what is!

7. During Hard Times, These Winners Restored Our Faith in Humanity!

Frances and Patrick Connolly, were living in a rented house in Moira, Northern Ireland when they played EuroMillions and won the jackpot of £114.9 million in the 2019 EuroMillions New Year’s Day draw. After they purchased a 5 acres bungalow for themselves, they have since given away over half of their winnings to loved ones, various charities and those affected by the Covid-19 pandemic.

Frances and Patrick Conolly

Along with paying off mortgages and financially assisting their family, friends and neighbors, they have set up two charitable foundations - the Kathleen Graham Trust in Northern Ireland, named after Frances' mother, and the PFC Trust in County Durham, where they now live.

Since the Covid-19 pandemic, the pair have gone above and beyond for the most vulnerable in society who need help more than ever. A few of the many contributions they have made include: Providing laptops and WIFI dongles to vulnerable schoolchildren who are required to distance learn, donating hundreds of electronic tablets to elderly care home residents whose families cannot visit, funding hot meal deliveries, giving £50 thank you vouchers for 150 front-line workers, and buying new sewing machines for an organization who make personal protective equipment (PPE) for health workers.

Heartwarming lottery winner stories

There are hundreds of heartwarming stories about people whose lottery luck got them through difficult situations or was used to help those in need, and reading about them reminds us why we love giving people the chance to play the world’s biggest lotteries online with theLotter.